The Government has produced a short-term Budget which does nothing to set up NSW for success on the other side of the pandemic and recession, Labor has warned.
Many of its principles are based on precarious and heroic assumptions that are unlikely to become reality, NSW Labor Leader Jodi McKay said.
Nearly 100 “ghost schools” with no funding or start date remain on the Government’s books, with no attention paid to them in this budget.
Proposed hospitals at Rouse Hill and Bankstown – both urgently needed – remain mere thoughts in the never never.
And for the first time, Treasurer Perrottet’s plan includes a land tax which will be levied on farms.
Hundreds of thousands of people looking for jobs, and small businesses looking to employ them, will be shaking their heads in disbelief at this budget.
“This is a Budget that could have been delivered two years ago, five years ago, 10 years ago,” Ms McKay said.
“It’s a tired, flat Budget from a tired, 10-year-old Government.”
Labor has queried how the Budget can rely at the same time on both borrowing at record low interest rates and on selling off state assets at a depressed state of the market.
“Both things cannot be true,” Ms McKay warned.
And Ms McKay warned that small businesses would be in a fight for their lives when Jobkeeper ends in March, because the Treasurer had failed to account for that looming economic crisis.
Labor offered to discuss significant tax reform with the Treasurer, “but all we got was nothing in response and a damp squib today … a suggestion about merely having further public consultation on stamp duty and a tinkering around the edges of payroll tax”.
“We’ve set up a three-part test for meaningful tax reform: does it create jobs, get people into their own homes and create a fairer tax system overall – and what he’s proposed today does not meet this test,” she said.
“This Government’s reputation has been shredded even further today with this flat, unimaginative Budget.”